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Press Release

St. John Man Pleads Guilty to Smuggling Illegal Aliens and Dominican National Pleads Guilty to Illegal Reentry

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Virgin Islands

St. Thomas, USVI – Brice Todman, 36, of St. John, and Jose Alfredo Rondon Castro, 40, of the Dominican Republic, both pleaded guilty today in District Court before District Court Judge Curtis V. Gomez. Todman pleaded guilty to bringing aliens into the United States and Castro pleaded guilty to illegal re-entry into the United States, United States Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert announced. Todman’s sentencing is set for February 13, 2019 and Castro’s sentencing is set for March 14, 2019.

According, to court documents, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Air and Marine Operations (AMO) apprehended a vessel in the area of North Haulover Bay, St. John after agents observed the vessel operating with no lights. After the vessel was stopped, AMO agents observed five male individuals on board. The ensuing investigation identified Todman as the captain and the other four male individuals, including Castro, as persons who were not U.S. citizens. Castro had been previously ordered deported in February 2018 and did not have permission from the Department of Homeland Security to re-enter the United States.

Todman and Castro both face sentences of up to ten years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.

The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine Unit and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Sigrid M. Tejo-Sprotte.

Updated November 13, 2018

Human Trafficking